Five Key Responsibilities of a CEO

As the corporate leader, the CEO is the key player driving the direction of the organization. While there are many duties this individual must perform, here are five I’ve found are key to their personal success for “delivering the goods.”

Hire the right talent: Like a successful sports team, the organizational team a CEO puts together will make the difference between success and failure. When the right people are in the right positions, you will win more than you lose. Start the hiring process with identifying outcomes and then match the skill set of employees with the needs of the organization. The closer the match between these two factors, the quicker the organization can move forward.

Understanding what to delegate; what to eliminate from the agenda and who he/she must serve: No one is all knowing and all doing! You cannot do everything needed to make the organization a success, no matter how skilled one is in leadership. As CEO, you can ill afford to not focus on the most critical components—things that drain resources (company and personnel) impacting the bottom line. Determine who can help, share responsibility with them and build a focus to improve deficiencies. Delegation doesn’t relieve you from responsibility but it does free time to concentrate on critical components that create conquest.

Understanding the culture and the impact it is making on organizational behavior / success: The organization plays a more significant role in performance and behavior of an employee than the behavior of employees to each other. Thus, the organizational culture is the most influential entity affecting organizational behavior. Don’t like what people are doing? Why not examine the cultural factors driving their decisions? That search just might be a revelation proving to be a catalyst for greater achievements.

Keeping the focus on people: A great CEO never forgets they are in the people business, not the service or widget manufacturing business. It’s always about the people being the most import asset of the organization. Great leaders don’t forget this fact and concentrate on building the contributions of employees. Leadership expert, John Maxwell, said, There is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raises them up as leaders and continually develops them.

Setting the expectations for everyone within the organization: I often ask leaders I train to think about the worst employee working for them. Normally, identifying this individual is quick. Then I “surprise” them by saying, “That employee represents your lowest tolerance level.” Many leaders, including CEO’s, don’t think about this fact. They prefer to believe it’s the individual behavior that is to blame, not their behavior. Sadly, that premise is false. Leaders must be very clear about the performance expectations of employees. Certainly, those factors can change as the organization changes. But what must always change is a blurred view of expectations by employees.

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